After last year's "Great Big Biffed It" episode Tommy wanted exactly nothing to do with his "cool new bike". So he reverted back to the tricycle.
The vain part of me wants to claim I handled that well by just letting him choose when he gained interest again, but the honest part of me just didn't know what to do yet and hadn't gotten around to taking a stab at it.
But a few weeks ago Tommy asked if he would need stitches if he rode the bike again, and I explained that the conditions in our new neighborhood are much more favorable for learning to ride a bike. With some reassurance he strapped on his helmet (which he doesn't see as a big help since he was wearing it last time when his chin guts fell out...) and pedaled slowly around the driveway. We talked a lot about braking and practiced a lot of times. "pedal pedal pedal BRAKE!" then "pedal pedal pedal pedal pedal BRAKE!" and then he dared pedal "hundreds of times!"
Now that Tommy loves his bike again, Little John has rediscovered the wiggle car and it is apparently impossible to get out of the vehicle and go inside before riding the bikes off into the sunset. Every day we get home from work and I try to chase them inside and they run for the bikes and get as far away from me as they can before I set down my purse and chase them down the street.
I can't tell you how maddening this ritual is - because at the end of the day as much as I'd love to go for a long leisurely bike ride/walk around the block, I have to make dinner and get them bathed and ready for bed before the stars come out.
Also I can't tell you how much I love this ritual. There's something about my kids loving to be outside that strokes my parental ego. As if my children wanting to ride bikes means I have somehow taught them something good.
I posted this picture on instragram and my Aunt (Hi Sharon!) so kindly reminded me to chase them down with helmets. This was the first time Tommy got on the bike again and I hadn't pulled out the helmets yet - and honestly I probably wouldn't have for a while if I hadn't been reminded. Do you put a helmet on a kid riding a wiggle car? I do now, because if Tommy has one of something John needs one too. Obviously.
The most expensive part of the wiggle car is that Little John brakes with his toes. Which means he's run totally through the toes of 2 pair of shoes in as many months. Before I find him another pair I'm making him "bike" in these ones, on the wrong feet, so he wears out the outside edge too.
I really love that these boys love their bikes, and I hope they (Little John) learn to be a little more cautious as they bike up and down our sidewalk, but mostly I'm just really glad for a flat neighborhood on a quiet road where they can reasonably bike up and down the street.